08/12/2020 – Paradigm shift in the global textile industry — auf Deutsch lesen
German Sustainability Award Design 2021: OceanSafe wins
The Krefeld-based start-up OceanSafe received the German Sustainability Award Design 2021 as a “pioneer”.
The Krefeld-based start-up developed synthetic textiles that are 100 percent biodegradable. This invention has the power to revolutionize the global textile market.
Manuel Schweizer, founder and CEO of OceanSafe:
“We are incredibly proud of this award. With all our products we think in holistic, biological cycles. To me, the idea of recycling is too short-sighted. What’s the point? With textiles made from yarns produced from recycled PET bottles, you are poisoning your customers and the environment anew. Red card for greenwashing!”
Paradigm shift in the global textile industry
Today, almost 30 percent of the microplastics in the world’s oceans can be attributed to the textile industry. This is where the OceanSafe journey begins. The company’s ideas are based on the simple principle of the biological cycle: Without toxic additives and materials, there is no harmful remainder. All OceanSafe products – from natural to synthetic, flame-retardant fibers – are therefore 100 percent biodegradable and become a nutrient for future generations after use. Conventional polyester and natural fibers contain toxic additives that enter the water cycle, especially during production and the first washing processes. OceanSafe has replaced such toxic additives with biodegradable counterparts.
Manuel Schweizer founded the start-up OceanSafe AG in 2019 and has been developing textiles for the interior sector for over 20 years. Six years ago, he started to focus on textiles that are part of the biological cycle. “I am not an eco-romantic. I’m not interested in being ‘green’ per se, but rather in being pragmatic about the future of our planet,” says Schweizer. “I was wondering what contribution we can make in the textile industry. With OceanSafe we are now initiating a global paradigm shift – within the textile industry and far beyond!”
Fabrics, bed linen, terry towels – the entire product portfolio of OceanSafe was has been certified with the “Cradle to Cradle Gold” standard. The idea of a holistic, biological cycle will be closely connected to the brand in future. Manuel Schweitzer would like to see OceanSafe becoming the quality seal in the global textile industry within the coming years. Strategically his company will focus on three product groups:
- Home textiles (e.g. curtain fabrics, bed linen, terry towels)
- Technical textiles (e.g. sun protection)
- Clothing / Fashion
The company markets its own home textiles for direct sales as well as private labels for retailers. Especially in the clothing segment, Manuel Schweizer’s team will concentrate on licensing models and co-branding. Well-known brands can then use the OceanSafe logo to showcase their commitment to the biological cycle. In this context, OceanSafe offers the return of used textiles, which are then composted industrially. After composting, only biogas and nutrient-rich humus remain!
“We will start tackling the large-scale market in January 2021 at over 3,000 specialist retailers in Germany – the products are a joint development with our partner for interior textiles, JAB Anstoetz,” says Schweizer. “Over the next five years, we are planning the global roll-out in all business units. Therefore, we are now entering the first round of investor financing.”